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02-24-2013, 06:22 PM
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I'm a UND fan who has seen a lot of Kristo. I know you've been talking about him for literally years now, but I wanted to chime in. I think he's going to play a lot of NHL games next year already, and I think he's eventually going to score 30 goals in a season. There are plenty of great college players who don't make it, but they're usually great because of things like hockey sense, or they have a knack for scoring, but their lack of world-class athleticism keeps them from the next level.

Kristo doesn't have those physical deficiencies. He's smallish but not small at all; very similar to many skilled NHL forwards. He skates well; in his first NHL game his speed and agility will fit in in a way that will be obvious to everyone. He has fantastic hands. If you've seen highlights this year, you've seen him set up linemates for a ton of chances and goals. He has a great motor, always buzzing.

He has been the best player on the ice in most games the last two seasons. I don't know if it's been posted here, but he had a fantastic third-period shorty on Friday night. He received a great pass on a 2-on-1 from Knight that he buried, but the impressive thing that you can't see on the highlight is that a few seconds before that he had a partial breakaway that didn't go in. When he and Knight took off from their own blueline on the scoring rush, I thought it was one of those chances that would fade; they had backcheckers right behind them and given they were at altitude in Denver, in the third period, at the end of a shift that already saw Kristo burn up the tank on a breakaway, I figured he had nothing left. But once they crossed the blueline, Kristo burst ahead to space, Knight delivered the puck, and Kristo buried it. He's a great college star as a senior, and he will open eyes in camp next fall.

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